School is almost over; you are now working on your exams and projects in preparation for your final weeks. You have spent the entire year working and organizing your Student Day events to promote personal thinking and honesty. As you go into your final exams, remember all that you have accomplished this year and the steps you took to get there. Finish out strong and with integrity.
It has been a wonderful year for all of us, as I have had the pleasure to witness the activities that you have done at your schools. More than words can say, you can check all the pictures on Facebook for the several events that took place at your schools. For the First time, Bicharaf is included within your student day. You organized activities, workshops, games, and competitions, all trying to promote the aim of Bicharaf, in growing and becoming better future ethical leaders.
After the establishment of their Bicharaf club, Antonine International School decided to legitimize the experience by holding a full school day dedicated to spreading the ethical message. They called it Play Fair. And so it was.
It all started at 11 am. Elie Rahi, president of the club, welcomed the team and gave an overview of the day, while the rest of the club members set up. Forty-five minutes later, the middle- school students flooded the area and were divided into groups A and B. Group A headed to the theater for an introduction to the Bicharaf debate on ethical behavior, while group B went straight for the game site, where groups would compete on set stations. Once each was done with their activity, the teams would switch spots.
In the theater, the group would be shown strips of videos from The Emperor’s Club that were relevant to the Bicharaf integrity theme, after which the students would debate, give out their opinions, and share their experiences. “Does virtue start at home?” was the argument that stood out. It stirred a heated debate with several students stepping up, voicing their thoughts, and getting cheered on by their peers. The students finally agreed to disagree and respect one another’s opinions with some voicing neutrality, and others switching from one side to another.
Meanwhile, on the game course, teams played a set of games in which they had to race through five stations and try to win envelopes with blue letters in them. These letters would eventually form a word. The team that loses at a certain station would receive a black letter which would lead nowhere. The games included an obstacle course with a few hurdles, a 2/3 ping pong match, and a 3-lap relay. As the middle- schoolers enjoyed their time, team leaders would make sure all members participated equally and that there was no cheating going on. Some students struggled with the heat, but fellow team members cheered them on. In the end, Group A’s Blue Team and Group B’s orange team were the victors. The Social Media team was very active in covering the event and Tweeted every single detail with special help from A.I.S’s social media member, Sasha Haddad.
At the conclusion of A.I.S’s Play Fair Day the students were back in class and the Bicharaf team met with the school’s Bicharaf club to give and receive feedback. Although some decided not to participate, students reportedly enjoyed their time and understood the main concept or integrity and fair play especially through the games. Overall, feedback was positive, and a show of hands by the club members indicated a repeat of a similar event will be planned soon.
This has been yet another hit by Bicharaf. Stay tuned for more.
On Saturday May 19 Lycee Ulamat Sobhi Mohmassani held an exhibition done by students to showcase principles learned at Bicharaf workshops. On going through the entrance of the school, attendees could see a Bicharaf logo hand painted by students incorporated into the Lycee’s emblem.
Principal Ms. Rima Iskandarani gave a speech about how Bicharaf has positively influenced students and changed their behavior. They were more motivated to bring Bicharaf lessons to their school given the two workshops they attended. From what they learned, students showed a greater incentive to want to implement these principles in their lives and enhance their school’s conduct, showing pride in what they learn and the ethical approach behind it.
Along with the exhibition, they had set up a projector that displayed pictures of all the events they organized to raise money to make improvements for the school. Students were very active and excited about fundraising, holding a bake sale and movie day that portrayed Bicharaf’s mission “choose right”. They were intent on doing all the planning and organizing themselves, following the ethical guidelines they gained at the workshops. At the movie day, Liar Liar starring Jim Carrey was screened, a movie about a man who promises his son he won’t lie for 24 hours. The movie served Bicharaf’s purpose of instilling the ideas of integrity and honesty; in addition, proceeds were gathered from the entrance fee and popcorn sold to fund future Bicharaf club events.
Mohmassani’s Bicharaf club also held meetings with teachers to introduce Bicharaf more in-depth, outlining specifically what Bicharaf is and what they promote. They also held a small conference for students and friends, raising more awareness about academic integrity, spurring new members to join their club. The students took what they learned from the Bicharaf workshops and having implemented them in their school, have made, and are making, a lasting impact.
Thursday May 24th was an amazing day for our Bicharaf family. During Student’s Day at College Notre Dame de Louaize, we welcomed around 150 new members into the Bicharaf club. With the help of NDL’s Bicharaf Team Members – Ibrahim, Raymond, Romy, Victor, Jimmy, and many more helpers – we were able to make this event a fun and successful one.
This event was organized by NDL students. It consisted of games, concerts, dance shows, and a basketball game hosted by NDL’s Bicharaf club. Since this year’s theme was the world’s countries, each class presented a dance about a country. Canada, China, India, Lebanon, and Scotland were some of the countries represented in the dances which included oriental dances, hip-hop, the Scottish folk-dance, the dabke, and cheerleading routine.
The Bicharaf team at College Notre Dame de Louaize hosted an exciting basketball game in which students played against teachers. It was a play fair game with no referee. It allowed students to understand the ethics and integrity that “Bicharaf” is all about. It showed that whether it’s in academics or in sports or at work, one should always be ethical and honest even when there is no judge or referee. The basketball game ended with a final score of 38 points for students vs. 39 points for the teachers. What captivated the audience most of all was that this game was such a success without the presence of a referee. The Bicharaf team helped explain how if everyone had personal integrity and played by the rules things can flow smoothly without any need for penalties and judges.
The Bicharaf Team did not just focus on the basketball game, they also worked on leading a big campaign about ethics. They designed bulletin boards with quotes about integrity and ethics. Some of these quotes were: “What is left when honor is lost?”, “A single lie destroys a whole reputation of integrity”, and many more. However, there was one quote that interested the students the most, “I will prefer to fail in honor than pass with cheating.” Bicharaf team members focused on that quote and explained that even though cheating your way through an exam is easy, you will not gain anything at the end of the day. There will come a time when, you are going to need to work on your own. It may be tempting to take shortcuts, but to actually achieve your goals you should make an effort.
Many students showed their enthusiasm to find out more about more about Bicharaf and throughout the whole day students were registering as members in the club in groups of five and six. Bicharaf had its own corner and helped make this event a fruitful one. All in all, the NDL day was a success and the Bicharaf team at NDL made the entire Bicharaf family very proud.
Unethical academic behavior is a rising epidemic because students don’t really know the consequences of cheating or plagiarism and hardly get punished for them. This is why the Antonine International School (AIS) Bicharaf Day for grades six through eight was held to teach students more about academic integrity. A group of roughly 300 students were split into two groups and attended two activities that displayed situations where ethics was a central theme; one consisted of watching the movie The Emperor’s Club and the other was stations of games that the students competed in to collect letters that spelled out “Academic Integrity”.
The Emperor’s Club showed one aspect of the ethics spectrum: cheating and its consequences. The movie revolved around Sedgwick, a troublemaker, who becomes a scholar for a school contest called Mr. Julius Caesar. During the contest, Mr. Hundert, the moderator, discovers Sedgwick to be cheating but nothing is done to stop it even though he folds to his competitor. When a friendly rematch is planned 25 years later, similar situations arise, leaving Mr. Hundert to question his own ethics all those years ago. In a discussion after the movie, the students talked about the ethics shown in the movie and which actions were ethical and which were not. The students were quick to point out the moral dilemmas and gained a clearer understanding that cheating is never an option if you want to get somewhere in life.
The second half of the day incorporated sportsmanship and friendly competition through games including a relay, an obstacle course, table tennis, and a donut eating game. Students were divided into teams by color and then competed against one another. The object of the games was to put the students in situations where they had to use good judgment and to graciously accept the outcome, whether they had won or lost. Bicharaf Day was a rousing success and the message that the AIS Bicharaf club wanted to pass on was made tangible to its younger audience in a fun and engaging way.